The Chinese version of the term "Red-ologist" describes one who focuses scholarly study on the centuries-old classic "A Dream of Red Mansions." Now, one of China's contemporary writers and famous Red-ologists, Liu Xinwu, has finished a 28-Chapter sequel to the novel. Publishing this sequel is driving collector's interest about the Red Mansions collections.
Zhang Jingen is a vintage comic book collector and seller. His personal collection includes thousands of Red Mansions comic books.
Zhang Jingen said, "Here is a sixteen-pack A Dream of Red Mansions comic book that is worth hundreds of Yuan now, and the price is still rising because it is the second edition. The first edition is much more valuable."
According to Zhang Jingen, the 1950's first edition is worth about 150 thousand Yuan. However, he says that he will keep his copies no matter how much the price rises.
Besides the vintage comic books, the Red Mansion stamps are prized items as well. Around 1982, China Post released a twelve-pack edition of "Jinling's Twelve Beauties" plus one miniature sheet. The total face value was only 2.28 Yuan, but the price now is unbelievably high.
Yang Liqing, Stamp Collector/ Seller, said, "A full twelve-pack in mint condition is worth about 240 Yuan, and the miniature sheet in mint condition is worth more than 1800 Yuan."
In the 90's, Themes of Red Mansions Dreams also appeared in limited editions of magnetic cards and commemorative coins. These rarely-seen collectibles are also getting popular in the secondary market.
As all these items represent, the charm of Red Mansions never fades away.